Sunday Jun, 13 2021 01:39:06 AM

8 Northern Kabuntalan gunmen yield, turn in guns to police

Breaking News • 11:45 AM Wed Mar 3, 2021
John M. Unson
The loose firearms are now in the custody of the police. (From CIDG-BAR)

MAGUINDANAO – Eight gunmen surrendered firearms to the police in separate symbolic rites the past two days, voluntary gestures that local officials are certain many will emulate.

The eight gun owners in Barangays Gayonga and Damatug, both in Northern Kabuntalan, yielded machine pistols, shotguns, a shoulder-fire M79 grenade launcher, assault rifles and a home-made .50 caliber bolt-action sniper rifle.

They agreed to turn in their unlicensed firearms through the intercession of Northern Kabuntalan municipal leaders, officials of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region and Brig. Gen. Samuel Rodriguez, director of the Bangsamoro regional police.

In a statement Wednesday, the CIDG-BAR said the collection of firearms from residents of Northern Kabuntalan was in line with the Oplan Paglalansag and Oplan Salikop of the Philippine National Police.

Both PNP programs are focused on disarming private armed groups and criminal gangs and on collection of loose firearms from citizens everywhere in the country.

The CIDG-BAR and the office of Rodriguez stated in separate statements Wednesday that the disarmament campaign also complements the bilateral Southern Mindanao normalization thrusts of the BARMM government and Malacañang.

Rodriguez, who has jurisdiction over the police offices in the provinces of Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi and in the cities of Lamitan, Marawi and Cotabato, is a senior member of the inter-agency BARMM regional peace and order council.

The BARMM, whose appointed chief minister, Ahod Ebrahim, is chairman of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, and Malacañang are together restoring normalcy in conflict-stricken areas covered by security agreements reached by both sides during 22 years of peace talks.

The CIDG-BAR and the Army’s 6th Infantry Division secured the surrender of seven members of the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters last January in Datu Piang, Maguindanao.

The BIFF, operating in the fashion of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, is blamed for all deadly bombings in central Mindanao since 2013.

The seven bandits also turned in assorted firearms before they pledged allegiance to the government in the presence of municipal officials and representatives from units of 6th ID and CIDG-BAR.


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